Nikkei Asia highlights new wave of investment following Biden's Vietnam visit

Chia sẻ
(VOVWORLD) - Nikkei Asia's October 10 issue published an article stating that United States President Joe Biden's visit to Vietnam last September ushered in a new era of expanded economic links between the two countries, as well as marking the start of a fourth boom of foreign investment in Vietnam.
Nikkei Asia highlights new wave of investment following Biden's Vietnam visit - ảnh 1

During his visit to Vietnam, President Biden held talks with Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong and agreed to raise the bilateral relationship to the highest level of "comprehensive strategic partnership". Upgrading its relationship with a foreign government by two ranks in one step represented an unusual move by Washington, the article said.

The high-profile talks held between the two leaders were also accompanied by several major business deals.

Vietnam Airlines, the national flag carrier, signed an initial agreement to purchase 50 Boeing 737 Max jets in a deal valued at around US$10 billion.

Leading Vietnamese tech firm FPT Software announced a strategic partnership with the American startup Landing AI.

Synopsys, a leading semiconductor design company, signed a memorandum of understanding with a Vietnamese Government organization to collaborate on helping the Vietnamese semiconductor industry cultivate its chip-design workforce and R&D fabrication capabilities.

Historically, the nation has witnessed three significant booms in foreign direct investment. The first occurred when Honda Motor began local two-wheeler production in 1997. The second wave spanned the period from the early 2000s up to the time around the collapse of the US investment bank Lehman Brothers in 2008, which triggered a global financial crisis. Most notably, Samsung Electronics of South Korea launched a mobile phone production base in the northern Bac Ninh province in 2009.

The third boom is believed to have come into full swing in the mid-2010s. With its purchasing power increasing, the Vietnamese market became a lucrative target for foreign consumer businesses. Indeed, Japanese shopping behemoth Aeon inaugurated its first Vietnamese store, Aeon Mall Tan Phu Celadon, in the country's largest city of Ho Chi Minh back in 2014.

President Biden's recent visit may trigger a further surge in American investment in Vietnam. Washington nevertheless perceives Vietnam as a friendly nation that is not part of China's sphere of influence, with President Biden's diplomatic move potentially being interpreted by American businesses as a green light to invest in the Vietnamese market.

The green light was given following Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh’s visit to the headquarters of chipmaking giant Nvidia in San Francisco on September 19, during which he called on Jensen Huang, CEO of Nvidia, to establish a production base in Vietnam and to capitalize on it as its manufacturing hub in Southeast Asia. 

Nvidia represents a leading manufacturer of chips in powering artificial intelligence systems. During the visit, PM Chinh also met with other prominent figures in the American tech sector, including Bill Gates, founder of Microsoft, as well as senior executives from Meta, formerly known as Facebook, and Elon Musk's SpaceX.

Historically, American business investments in the nation have been modest compared to those by Asian economic powers like Japan or the Republic of Korea (RoK).

Vietnam is therefore keen to pivot from its traditional labour-intensive industries, such as garment manufacturing and electronics assembly, and move toward more value-added high-tech sectors.

Collaborations with US tech companies, especially those dominant in the areas of semiconductors and AI, will therefore be crucial for the transformation of the country's industrial structure.